Writing a game by yourself is hard. Harder than I thought when I started. Obviously, everything needs to be done by a single person, or outsourced. The game’s scope needs to be kept realistic and that means fairly small. I aimed small when starting, but in retrospect I should have aimed even smaller. This means that progress can be slow and, as a non-artist, it is easy to see all the things can’t do well. Sometimes motivation can be an issue.
The past week has seen the extremes experienced. At the start of the week there were many bugs and the game obviously had no polish. I thought I would never get it to work. A week later and the bugs are all fixed, at least the known ones! The goals for the 3rd alpha release have been reached and it is clear there has been forward movement. I was also surprised by the AI as my computer opponent surrounded me – how cool!
With this alpha release it is time to start working towards a wider audience. At the moment there is just a couple of people seeing my work. Motivation to do the work will be easier if more people are playing a test version – assuming they don’t completely trash the concept. So Alpha4 will be a complete player-vs-computer scenario version of the game (campaign and multiplayer will come later). If it is all fine, it should be quickly followed by a very similar beta version to show to as many people as possible.
It may be a case of the sunken cost fallacy, but I just have to keep going. Oh, and remember to do a smaller game next time!